(JNS.org) Madrid Mayor Manuela Carmena has signed on to an American Jewish Committee’s (AJC) initiative, "Mayors United Against Anti-Semitism," which calls on municipal leaders in the U.S. and Europe to take a stand against rising anti-Semitism.
"Anti-Semitism is unacceptable," Carmena said in a statement released Monday. She is the first Spanish mayor to join the AJC campaign, which was launched last July in the U.S. and expanded to Europe last fall. Fifty-six European mayors have joined 309 American municipal leaders in signing the initiative's mission statement so far, including mayors from Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom.
The statement calls upon "mayors, municipal leaders, and other officials in Europe to join us in affirming that anti-Semitism is not compatible with fundamental democratic values” and to recognize that "in a world of global communications where anti-Semitic ideas can and do spread quickly, the impact of the rise of anti-Semitism in Europe does not stop at Europe's borders."
The statement also declares that anti-Semitic acts cannot be justified as manifestations of views regarding the existence or actions of the State of Israel.
"Mayor Carmena's commitment to safeguarding Madrid's Jewish community, and to being a vanguard against anti-Semitism and proponent of democratic values, is deeply appreciated," said Dina Siegel Vann, director of AJC's Belfer Institute for Latino and Latin American Affairs, who attended the signing ceremony in Madrid on Monday.